When working with an interior designer, you will often find that we would rather use our “preferred tradesmen’’ to manufacture and work on the project. From those that help with the building or renovation, such as painters, joiners, electricians, plumbers, and tilers (to name but a few), to the interior and furnishing tradesmen; custom upholsterers, cushion makers, furniture suppliers, window furnishing installers and more.
It’s more than the finished product or the physical work involved, it’s about the relationships. We are only as good as our tradesman, as it is working with the right people that help us to ensure our consistency of excellence throughout the experience of working with us.
How we find our trusted trades
After many years of being an interior designer in Sydney, I have been fortunate enough to work with some of the most outstanding people across an array of industries. I only ever work with highly experienced, skilled and talented tradesmen, to ensure that every element of each of our projects is completed to the absolute highest quality and standards. The quality of their work supports the quality of my own work, which is why I work so hard to maintain long-standing, meaningful relationships with our trades. But how did we find them?
Like every relationship, there is always a starting point, working with somebody for the first time. In today’s world of social media, for example Instagram, it’s a lot easier to see the calibre of somebody’s work. You can not only see visually what they create but their interactions such as page follows, post likes and comments, all giving an invaluable insight into potential new tradesmen.
Recommendations are always a fantastic starting point for your own interior design aspirations. That way you can gain first-hand experience of how that person/company operated in terms of time frames, professionalism, and most importantly, the end finished product. Another reason why we continue to work with our trusted trades, we have that quality first-hand experience to reassure us of our commitment.
We aren’t just concerned with the quality of the work, whilst of course incredibly important, so is the relationship with that person providing the service. Again, coming back to the importance of building strong relationships. When you have been working with somebody for some time, you get to know and understand how each other likes to work; their unique personal preferences, and your own. Let’s use the example of installing curtains in a room.
Once we have picked the fabric for a set of curtains, there are many other elements to consider. What should the lining of the curtains be, will they hang on rings or a rod, what material will the rod be made from, does the hem need to be weighted, will the curtains puddle, do they require flip sticks so fingers don’t mark the fabric… the list genuinely does go on.
When I meet my trusted curtain makers, they are already a few steps ahead. They already know my personal preferences, unless I state otherwise (based on the particular project or client). For example, they know that I prefer curtains to be installed electronically if possible. Or they know that I love curtains to puddle.
It’s these small insights that make a big difference when it comes down to the time involved in getting the perfectly desired outcome. And this applies to all of our tradesmen and their diligence when it comes to attention to detail, particularly the details that are important to us as designers. We know how to work well together, to get the most from each project efficiently. Making every last detail count, no matter how insignificant it may seem.
Ultimately, as the interior designer for your project, the quality control aspect is our responsibility. We are responsible for not only designing the perfect space for your home, but ensuring that the design is turned into reality seamlessly through expert creation or installation and that each part of that design stands the test of time, not only through how the style ages over time, but the quality of the craftsmanship involved.
We have to design based on our clients’ brief, and our tradesmen have to replicate that exact design in real life. If it doesn’t work out how we plan, then that reflects badly on MSID, not our tradesmen, which is why we work incredibly hard to ensure that we maintain our fantastic relationships and continue to deliver quality time and time again. There is certainly no cutting of corners for any reason.
Working with your own tradespeople
We appreciate that some of our clients have long-standing relationships of their own with tradespeople that they may have used themselves over the years. In some circumstances, this is something we are open to, for example, if they have a favoured architect or landscaper, or perhaps a builder they have used in the past (that we can scope out on social media!).
But really, ultimately we prefer to use our own people. It saves time initially, as our working relationship allows for streamlined processes, which reduces the overall hours for the project. But more importantly, it means that we have full accountability and control over the final delivery of any project. We can guarantee that every aspect of your design will be delivered at the highest quality, on time, every time. Project management of large scale projects can become quite tricky, without strong, familiar relationships working together behind the scenes to hit the right milestones at the right time.
Even if we gave you our invaluable list of trusted trades and suppliers as an insider ‘cheat sheet’, although we expect your experience would be excellent along with the finished product, we could never guarantee that you would be achieving the same incredible outcomes that we do, working collaboratively as designers in ways that we know how to get the best from each supplier. Trust in your interior designer is crucial, including your trust in their trusted trades.
We hope you enjoyed today’s article about working with trades in interior design. If you are interested in working with an interior designer and would like to know more about MSID, please contact us online, we would love to hear from you.